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In response to the disruptions caused by the global pandemic, graduate programs in the Humanities and Social Sciences in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh are pausing admissions for fall 2021.

This one-year intermission will enable us to devote our resources and attention to our continuing students. Graduate training and research are central to the mission of the Dietrich School and the Department of Sociology. While we do not pause admissions lightly, in these uncertain times we are committed to optimally supporting our current students’ success and wellbeing.

If you seek to begin your graduate studies in the fall of 2021, we thank you for your understanding and wish you all the best in your endeavors. If you consider applying to our program for fall 2022, or have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the Director of Graduate Studies, Dr. Joshua Bloom (

The steps below pertaining to the typical admissions process remain posted for informational purposes, though as stated above admissions have been suspended.


Applicant Information 

Your complete application must be received by January 15. The department does not offer admission in the spring term nor does it not admit students for a terminal Master's degree. 

Applicants to the graduate program in sociology at the University of Pittsburgh apply online. However, your application is not considered complete until all application materials are received.

Application Requirements

All application materials must be submitted electronically through the University of Pittsburgh online application process

The complete application materials include the following:

  • An application form
  • A non-refundable application fee of $50. The University does not offer any fee waivers, but we recognize the following national programs that cover application fees: Gates Millennium Scholars Program, McNair Scholars, and Society for Advancement of Chicanos & Native Americans.
  • A career statement that is 2-3 pages responds to the following questions:
    • What kinds of sociological problems and methods interest you?
    • What kind of career do you have in mind, and how will being a disciplined sociologist help you meet your goals?
    • How do you evaluate your current proficiency in the discipline, and what sort of training will best develop your capacities?
    • What stimulated your interest in the University of Pittsburgh's Department of Sociology?
  • A sample of written work (e.g., a senior thesis or term paper) that provides evidence of creative and critical thinking, quality of writing, and potential for engaging in independent research.
  • Three letters of recommendation intended to provide independent evaluation of each applicant's potential. Letters should come from former teachers or others who can evaluate your intellectual and academic qualifications for graduate study. Reference writers will submit these forms and letters independently from the application using a link embedded in an e-mail they receive from the online application process.
  • Unofficial copy of transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions you have attended. If non-US citizens, please submit transcripts in the native language accompanied by notarized English translations. The University requires at least a 3.0. GPA. Note: official transcripts will need to be sent if admitted into the program. 

Note: The Department does not consider GRE scores in the admissions process.


All non-U.S. citizens applying to the graduate program, except for those who have received degrees from a U.S. institution or from other English-speaking countries, must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) as part of their application packet to demonstrate a sufficient command of English to meet the requirements of their field. The minimum scores are 90 for TOEFL (with at least a score of 22 in all of the four sections of speaking, listening, reading, and writing) and 7.0 for IELTS (with at least 6.5 in each of its four sections).

The TOEFL is offered several times each year at sites in the United States and abroad. If not available locally, the annual schedules and other information about the TOEFL can be obtained online or by mail from:
Educational Testing Service (ETS)
TOEFL, Box 6151
Princeton, NJ 08541-6151 USA
(609) 771-7100

NOTE: TOEFL application booklets generally are available at U.S. colleges and universities and at U.S. consulates and U.S. Information Service offices abroad. Foreign students should check with these sources before writing to Princeton.

TOEFL Institution Code: 2927

IELTS official scores should be mailed to:
Graduate Administrator
University of Pittsburgh
2400 Wesley W. Posvar Hall
230 South Bouquet Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15260

Questions about the graduate program and application process may be addressed to Graduate Administrator, Brian Deutsch.